With the season in the home stretch, SWMOBasketball takes a look at some of the area’s most talented ball handlers.
Isaac Haney, 6’1, G, 2021, Dora (pictured)
Arguably the most dangerous isolation player in the area who can break ankles and create show time moments. Haney is a creative ball handler and scorer, can knock down 3-pointers off the catch or off the bounce and can run the point to great success. His best attribute might be his ability to create offense off the bounce as he can really handle it and is crafty off the dribble. He can spin to the basket and he uses his euro step to great success.
Jake Branham, 6’2, G, 2019, Catholic
A smooth guard who flips the ball around his body then brings it back around. Branham is a high caliber player who puts up big numbers game after game all while making those around him better. He has excellent speed and can get a step on defenders in full and half court settings. A jazzy player who has established himself as a crowd favorite on the road and at home. A player who showcases the benefits of hard work and long hours in the gym.
Anton Brookshire, 6’1, G, 2021, Kickapoo
Another sophomore with a terrific upside. Brookshire continues to showcase a high basketball IQ, ability to drive, finish and create as well as a quick, smooth release from deep. He’s has a deep understanding for his position, the game and the handles that can leave you shaking your head and smiling. Defenders will swear there was a wet spot on the floor, but Brookshire knows he caught them looking.
Jake Farnsworth, 5’10, G, 2019, Fordland
A flashy player with combinations and a step-back. And that step back is money inside and out. He sells a drive then backs up before opponents know what hit them. Even if they’re expecting it, Farnsworth doubles the play and gets his shot off, or he slips by them and takes it for two. Farnsworth doesn’t get as much press as he should. An underrated player and a true force when he has the ball in his hands.
Mo Grayer, 6’2, G, 2020, Willard
Grayer draws a ton of attention when he has the ball. He’s an athletic player with an excellent rhythm to his game and a nice hop to his step. His handles look great in transition as uses his body to sell fakes. His misdirection is easy to fall for and his athletic ability allows him to correct his shot and score through the air. Grayer plays well in Willard’s new system. He looks to pass, score and break free in search of a basket.
Grant Harper, 5’7, G, 2021, Greenwood
The shortest player on our list but one of the trickiest to stay in front of. Harper is a quick player who never worries about full court pressure of defensive traps. He sees the floor well and he uses screens better than most guards his age. He can get inside, he just doesn’t roll the dice for himself as much as he could. A confident player who controls the pace of the game.
Ian Jones, 6’2, G, 2019, Bolivar
A tough player who uses his strength, size and frame to get inside. Jones has always had good handles and he can create space with his fakes, step-backs and all-around physicality. Defenders know him as a duel threat, a player who can score anywhere on the floor. He is great at getting inside and finishing through contact and he can score behind the 3-point line as well. Jones just knows how to find openings.
Josh Mason, 6’, G, 2020, Nixa
Mason finds separation through his combinations. He knows he can get around opponents, he just doesn’t know which fake or dribble pattern will get them to bite. He’s a fluid player who spots schemes and finds openings. Mason has missed the majority of the season with an injury but is expected to return to the floor the first of February.
Aminu Mohammed, 6’4, G/F, 2021, Greenwood
An elite guard with everything you could hope for in a player. Mohammed can handle the ball, shoot and create plays for himself and others at a high level. He has a great off-balance game and finds his rhythm quickly from the start. He has an excellent physical presence and can zip through crowds like he’s running a practice drill. A true baller with the skill and athleticism to do whatever he wants.
Dontae Taylor, 6’, G, 2020, Parkview
Taylor can cross up defenders and score from deep. He makes seasoned moves with the ball and can get to the basket and score with his weak hand. He finds looks by staying active and using the team’s offense but is a good in one-on-one situations. Taylor has a good first step and can step back if his opponent if giving him space, find a teammate who has an open look or run past defenders if they’re playing too tight. A versatile player who gets buckets and plays physical.